Types of TLDs
Top Level Domains, or TLDs, are everywhere. They are the last part of a domain name and every single URL has them, in one form or another. There are a variety of different types of TLDs that can result in a great deal of confusion, especially when someone is trying to decide which one to get for their domain.
A generic TLD, also written as gTLD, is a type of TLD that are used by a particular type of organization. These TLDs tend to be three letters long and they are named to make it fairly clear what the organization does that owns the domain. Some examples include:
.aero : this is used by the air transport industry
.asia : this TLD is used by companies that operate in Asia
.biz: this TLD is used by businesses, or those who commonly operate in the world of business
.cat: this TLD is used by companies that operate in Catalan and help those who speak the languages find websites that will suit their needs
.com: commonly used only by commercial industries, but unrestricted, meaning that practically anyone is able to use it
.coop: this is a TLD that is used to designate a Co-op
.edu: this TLD is used to denote that a post-secondary educational organization is using a particular domain
.gov: this is used for government programs, agencies, and other government related organizations, but only in the United States of America
.info: this TLD is used for informational sites, but is also unrestricted so it is commonly seen across the Internet
.int: this fairly uncommon TLD is used by organizations that have been created as the result of an international treaty
.jobs: this TLD is used by sites that help people learn more about jobs, find jobs, and apply to jobs
.mil: this TLD denotes that the site is connected with the US military is some way
.mobi: this is a rapidly growing TLD that shows a user that the site has been specifically designed to cater to those with mobile devices
.museum: this is the TLD that many museums choose to use in order to distinguish themselves from other organizations that have the same name, but are not a museum.
.name: this TLD is used for families and individuals who have created websites
.net: this was originally created to only be used by network infrastructures, but is now unrestricted
.org: originally for organizations that could not be described by any other TLD, but it is now unrestricted
.tel: for telecommunications companies
.travel: for travel agencies and other companies that are directly linked to the travel business
Country Code TLD
A country code TLD is also written as ccTLD. It is reserved for the specific use of countries or territories that are not dependent on anyone else. There are instances where a country code can also be appropriated for another situation. For example, the ccTLD for Dijibouti is .dj. The gTLD for a disc jockey or CD merchant is also .dj. Often, the rest of the domain will make it abundantly clear which type of organization is using the TLD.
As the Internet continues to grow, more gTLDs and ccTLDs will be added. However, this article should have provided you with a comprehensive list of the most common gTLDs that should help to avoid any confusion in the future.
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